Magazine article Marketing

Battle of the Brands

Magazine article Marketing

Battle of the Brands

Article excerpt

All is still to play for as The Marketing Society Brand of the Year 2010 voting hots up.

More than 4000 votes have already been cast in an overwhelming response to The Marketing Society Brand of the Year 2010 initiative, in association with ITV and Marketing. From a shortlist of 20 brands, a real-time snapshot after two weeks of voting reveals that Aviva, Giffgaff, Costa Coffee and Innocent are currently among the frontrunners.

Smoothie brand Innocent has attracted several hundred votes, suggesting that brand perceptions have not been dented by Coca-Cola's acquisition of a majority stake.

Innocent marketing director Thomas Delabriere believes that the brand's move back into double-digit growth after a tough recessionary trading period means it should be considered a strong contender for Brand of the Year. 'I think we deserve to win as we have launched exciting initiatives, including Veg Pots, our 'Buy one, get one bee' event and the first banana-free smoothie, all of which have attracted more consumers than ever to the brand,' he says.

'Innocent's sales are up by more than 20% as a result, despite the economic environment and a super-premium positioning. This has been done while managing the transfer of some shares to Coke without significant consumer backlash - keeping the brand true to itself.'

'Unique approach'

Mobile brand Giffgaff, the 'people-powered network' is also proving popular, which chief marketing officer Cristel Lee Leed puts down to its unique approach to business.

'Giffgaff should win as we are like no other brand in the competition,' says Leed. 'With just 16 of us in the office, we have changed the game in mobile by creating a new and engaging business model that works, proven by killer stats, such as a Net Promoter Score of 74% and a Customer Service Index of 90%. And we do it all online, low cost, almost entirely social, mutual and in collaboration with our members.'

Aviva's popularity is testament to 18 months of strong brand activity since the insurance company changed its name from Norwich Union, says marketing director Amanda Mackenzie.

Its latest campaign, 'You are the big picture', has resulted in more than 1m hits on its website, while more than 40,000 photos have been uploaded in the first three weeks.

'Aviva now has two-and-a-half times the sector average on positive things said about it and it leads in customer satisfaction on the YouGov Buzz index,' says Mackenzie. …

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